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====== Serval Mesh (app for Android) ====== The [[content:servalmesh:|Serval Mesh]] app for Android is the [[:content:about|Serval Project's]] flagship software product. It is a [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_software|free]] app that provides [[VoMP|voice calls]], [[MeshMS|text messaging]] and [[Rhizome|file sharing]] directly over Wi-Fi links between mobile devices. The app communicates with distant devices via intermediate devices using [[mesh routing]], and uses strong [[crypto|elliptic curve encryption]] to guarantee privacy and identity even though some phones in the mesh network may not be trusted. * [[:content:servalmesh:|Serval Mesh]] -- current, past and forthcoming releases, download and installation, and user documentation * [[:content:servalmesh:development|Serval Mesh development]] -- copyright and licensing, source code, technical documentation, testing, and issue tracking ==== Why Wi-Fi? ==== [[:content:about]] made the obvious choice of [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wi-Fi|Wi-Fi]] for wireless communication in disaster situations because: * it has widespread regulatory availability -- most countries have allocated the Wi-Fi frequency bands for short-range domestic use * the Wi-Fi [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/802.11|IEEE 802.11]] standards are mature and broadly adopted * Wi-Fi is supported by very many existing devices, including mobile [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smart_phone|smartphones]] * the Wi-Fi **Ad Hoc** mode is well suited to mesh networking, although it is not perfect and is poorly implemented by many manufacturers ==== Why Android? ==== [[:content:about]] chose Android as the mobile platform for developing [[:content:servalmesh:|Serval Mesh]] for the following reasons: * [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feature_phone|feature phones]] generally do not support Wi-Fi, or do not support Wi-Fi Ad Hoc mode * the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPhone|Apple iPhone]] is priced far too high to be afforded by the majority of the world's citizens * the operating systems and development environments for feature phones and the iPhone are [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proprietary_software|proprietary]] and therefore: * are expensive, or * have restrictive license terms, or * are inaccessible to the general [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_and_open-source_software|free and open-source software community]], or * all of the above. * Android permits the Ad Hoc Wi-Fi mode to be enabled (although most commercial handsets must be “rooted” in order to do so) * Android's terms and conditions on developers place fewer obstacles to the kind of freedom-oriented development that [[:content:about]] is pursuing * many manufacturers are making and selling Android smart-phones, so there is a wide choice of hardware * there are free Android distributions like [[http://www.cyanogenmod.org/|CyanogenMod]] which offer alternatives to the locked-down firmware supplied by many manufacturers * the price of Android smart-phones is continually dropping, making them more ane more accessible to remote and disadvantaged communities